5km outside Dapoli it happened. I was riding with Mama as pillion. We got ourselves a rear flat tyre. We just had had a very passionate 15 minutes about overtaking in a unknown town scene with Sujay in Dapoli. But all rallied and we got working. They got working, while I sat and did the all important task of guarding the bags and the damaged tyre (which, I must point out, was still attached to the bike). The sun had gone down 15-20 minutes ago. We were on the road to Harne at the edge of a tiny hamlet on the outskirts of Dapoli.
Sujay departed in the direction of Dapoli to search out a tyre repair shop. Mama and Raju and me discussed our night halt. I tried to go to the house on the opposite side of the road and try to get them to let us stay in their rather large courtyard. They declined giving silly reasons. Mama and Raju departed to explore further lands.
I was left alone in the darkness. The damaged leg deemed sundry movement unnecessary, so I settled down in the grass, on the side, under a large tree, to contemplate. I always try the large tree : maybe I will get lucky some day. Having spent some time in the fruitless pursuit of wisdom, I noticed that the camera was in range. And that the sky had turned deep indigo. I got it out. The tripod was beyond reach. so I decided to put the camera inside the large yellow helmet. I made all the necessary settings. The problem, now, was that I had to press the shutter in the self timer mode and make the camera steady inside the helmet within the stipulated 10 seconds. I managed that bravely, but the angle got crazy. It looks better this way, I tell myself. Those bands are the head or tail lights of the few motorised vehicles which passed by.
- Abhijit Rao, October 19th, 2005